District meets Adequate Yearly Progress
TERRY AHNER/TIMES NEWS Palmerton Area School District has met Adequate Yearly Progress in the 2010-11 school year. Pictured are (l-r) Sherrie Fenner, director of curriculum and instruction, Carol Boyce, superintendent, Kathy Egan, principal, high school, Mary Brumbach, principal, S.S. Palmer Elementary/Parkside Education Center, and Christine Steigerwalt, principal, Towamensing Elementary.
In what has become a customary trend, Palmerton Area School District has met the academic barometer by which it's measured.
Sherrie Fenner, director of curriculum and instruction, recently announced that the district has met Adequate Yearly Progress in the 2010-11 school year.
Adequate Yearly Progress is a key measure of school performance established by the Federal No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. In order to achieve it, schools and districts must meet target percentages with all students, as well as with every subgroup of 40 or more students, scoring at the Advanced or Proficient level.
Fenner said each of the five buildings in the district have made AYP, which marks the sixth year the district has met the criteria. In 2009-2010, the district failed to meet AYP for the first time in five years after the junior high fell short of the standards.
She said S.S. Palmer Elementary met 17 of the 17 targets to make AYP. The target goal for performance for the 2010-11 school year was 67 percent for math and 72 percent for reading, said Fenner, who added 81 percent of the students scored proficient or above in math and 76 percent proficient or above in reading. The attendance rate target is 90 percent, with S.S. Palmer's attendance rate at 96 percent.
Towamensing Elementary also met 17 out of the 17 targets, Fenner said. In mathematics, 82 percent of the students scored at or above proficiency, while 74 percent of the students scored at or above proficiency in reading, she said. The attendance rate was 96 percent, Fenner said.
The junior high also met 17 out of 17 targets, she said. The junior high scored 64 percent of students proficient or above in mathematics, said Fenner, who added that target was met using the confidence interval exception, which roughly equates to the statistical margin of error. In reading, 78 percent of students scored at or above proficiency, she said. The attendance rate was 95 percent, Fenner said.
Fenner said the high school met 12 out of 12 targets, as it didn't have a Special Education subgroup in math or reading, which meant it only needed to meet 12 targets. The high school scored 66 percent of students proficient or above in mathematics, said Fenner, who added that target was met using the confidence interval exception. In reading, she said 77 percent of students scored at or above proficiency. The graduation rate was 95.6 percent, with a state graduation target of 85 percent, Fenner said.
The Parkside Elementary Center doesn't give PSSA's, as they don't begin until third grade, Fenner said. Therefore, the AYP status for Parkside is based on third grade scores, she said.
Fenner noted that Keystone Awards are given to buildings and districts that make AYP for two consecutive years.
"Our district has a long history of receiving the Keystone awards," Fenner said. "We are proud that our students continue to do well on the PSSA, and thank everyone involved in the education of the students to make this happen."